Millions of unsold Yeezys are currently sitting in purgatory, with warehouses around the world housing these highly sought-after sneakers. Some of the designs, such as the turtleneck sweater-inspired ones, are incredibly comfortable and stylish, while others resemble toothy soles or a cloud of pillows. Although previously sold out in limited editions, the shoes still fetch high prices on platforms like StockX and Goat.
Unfortunately, these sneakers currently await their uncertain fate seven months after the largest corporate bankruptcy in history. Adidas AG, the company’s owner, is not sure what to do with the tainted product created by Kanye West, now known as Ye, who was a prominent business partner. The total value of these unsold sneakers is about $1.3 billion.
Senior executives at Adidas headquarters in Germany have spent months trying to figure out what to do with the inventory dilemma. They have considered removing the Yeezy logo stitching from each shoe, but it would be too much work. Donating the shoes to disaster-hit countries like Turkey or Syria could lead to illegal human trafficking. Burning the shoes in a hypebeast bonfire would be an environmental disaster, and chopping them up into plastic bits to make turf would also be unsatisfactory.
Eventually, management decided that the best course of action was to start selling the sneakers while donating a portion of the proceeds to charity. The first batch of stranded shoes will become available at the end of May, finally giving these unused sneakers a new lease on life.